The University of Kansas and Adidas announced the extension of their footwear and apparel agreement through 2031. The university said the deal is one of the largest apparel partnerships in college athletics.
Together, KU and Adidas said they are building a comprehensive, institutional approach unlike any other apparel agreement in the country. The agreement will promote the Jayhawk brand with a sharp focus on impacting the former, current and future Jayhawk.
Expanding on the success of the existing partnership, Adidas will continue to provide footwear, uniforms, apparel and accessories to all 18 of the Jayhawks’ intercollegiate athletics teams, which comprise 460-plus student-athletes. Beyond athletics, Adidas will partner with KU to support the KU Adidas Leadership Scholars program, a development program for eligible KU students designed to supplement their educational experience.
“A strong athletics department benefits our academic mission and is particularly important to student recruitment, alumni relations and our overall positioning in the higher education marketplace,” said Chancellor Douglas A. Girod. “This partnership with Adidas strengthens our university and better enables us to fulfill our mission of education, outreach and research. During our comprehensive discussions with Adidas leadership, it was clear they want to partner not just with Kansas Athletics but with a leading public research university that is striving to improve society. This is especially apparent in Adidas’ commitment to the KU Adidas Leadership Scholars program, which will benefit students across KU.”
Girod added, “Both we and Adidas have done our due diligence and thoroughly evaluated all factors related to this partnership, including the current environment related to college basketball. We are confident about this renewed partnership and look forward to continuing our relationship with Adidas.”
KU first partnered with Adidas in 2005, entering into an eight-year agreement. The two organizations renewed their partnership in 2013 with a six-year extension through 2019.
“The University of Kansas is an incredibly important partner for us, and we couldn’t be more excited to continue creating and innovating with the Jayhawks,” said Zion Armstrong, president of Adidas North America. “We’re inspired by the foundation we’ve created. There are still so many opportunities to unlock together to make a difference in the lives of Jayhawk students and athletes.”
“This commitment is much more than the standard sponsorship product-allowance agreement,” said KU Athletics Director Jeff Long. “Adidas has demonstrated genuine commitment to the long-term growth of Kansas Athletics, while also making a meaningful contribution to the overall academic mission of the university.”
Long added, “This agreement benefits our student-athletes by continuing to provide the best performance shoe and apparel products for our 11 women’s and seven men’s programs and by providing Adidas’ support and expertise in product innovation. In addition to benefitting all 18 of our sport programs, this agreement also provides resources to invest in our football program and the future renovation of David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium.”
The renewal came despite Kansas becoming ensnared in college basketball’s pay-for-play scandal. An indictment alleged former Adidas executive James Gatto and the coach of an Adidas-sponsored AAU team paid prospects to attend Kansas. Kansas forward Silvio De Sousa was subsequently suspended all of last season and the upcoming season and has declared for the NBA draft. Kansas last week filed an appeal to the NCAA on his behalf to lift the suspension for the upcoming season.